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Beware Lest The Marketing Poop Howl Triumphantly Over The Inert Corpse Of Your Credibility In Sweet, Sweet Victory While All Of Your Friends Hate You And/Or Sleep With Your Significant Other

I'm glad that other folks are being diligent about warning others when they encounter social networking sites with sketchy functionality and/or requirements but what really bothers me is that people who should know better are giving away user names and passwords to sites that, at least when you're doing the initial sign up, are an unknown quantity. Seriously, most registration forms for networking sites ask for information pretty liberally and you should be aware of what you're giving away to a potential spammer or identity thief. The author of this post took corrective action afterward and posted information on how to remove Gazzag profiles but the damage has already been done. This site essentially uses your identity without your permission to lure your friends into signing up in a sort of pyramid scheme. You've loaned out your credibility as a clickable friend to assholes. In many cases a little investigation prior to handing out passwords would save embarrassment and the spread of more fucking spam because really what we need is more fucking spam. Oh, and more social networking.

Another good point that she brings up:

There are real implications to emails being sent from a user’s address. In my case, messages went to my boss and colleagues who are in much higher positions than me. Those are people whom I think carefully about emailing, and I would never send them an invitation to a general social network. Messages also went to a couple of my exes. People do not actively remove connections in social networks, so a person’s list of friends will often contain people who are not friends any more. It implies something to delete a friend, so most people avoid it by just doing nothing. When a site like Gazzag comes along and emails all those people, it carries a lot of social implications that users probably don’t want to make.

if you're going to going to expose yourself to potentially bad people (it kind of correlates with doing research on a topic unless you're Pollyanna) you should probably keep your contacts/friends current. Your name gives credibility to things and, although that is in some respects terrible if only because it is so persuasive, allows some company with dreams of tall Google dollars stacked up to the moon to stuff their marketing poop in your mouth. It sounds awful because it is awful. I recommend pasting that shit into a text file where most villainous applications (this includes our pals worms and viruses) aren't as inclined to search. When I say 'shit' I mean contacts that aren't used with the frequency and familiarity that would perhaps forgive an offer to swallow some marketing poop dumped into their inbox. That is probably more than a little paranoid but I'm more than a little paranoid.

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